Maroon 5 takes beating leading up to Super Bowl LIII halftime performance.
1. I'm not exactly a softie, but I feel bad for Maroon 5.
I’m neutral on the band. Don't like them, don't hate them. A quick check of my iTunes shows zero songs from the group, but like everyone else, my head bops around whenever I hear Moves Like Jagger and I was super impressed with Adam Levine’s rendition of Purple Rain at Howard Stern’s 60th birthday party in 2014.
Other than that, I have no feelings about Maroon 5, but the beating they’ve taken leading up to their Super Bowl LIII halftime performance has been so over the top.
Obviously the country is as divided as ever before, but it seems like the only two things the majority of Americans can agree on is 1) Please, God, let the Rams win Sunday and 2) Maroon 5 is a brutal choice for the halftime show.
From the minute it was rumored the band would be chosen to perform at Super Bowl LIII to the day the official announcement was made to right this second, people are still apoplectic that the pop band is doing the honors in Atlanta on Sunday.
It’s gotten so bad, I have nothing but sympathy for the group.
Even the WWE is kicking Maroon 5 while it's down.
You can’t blame them for saying yes to the NFL’s invitation. They’d be stupid to turn down the gig. The NFL should take the abuse, not the band.
Of course, in typical NFL fashion, the league made everything worse Tuesday when it announced that it was cancelling the group's press conference this week. Obviously, unfunny and unoriginal people kept throwing out the “They should cancel the halftime show instead” line, which only put the negative spotlight back on Maroon 5.
The press conference would’ve been the perfect opportunity for the group to have some fun with the bashing they’ve taken and turn themselves into sympathetic figures. If you've ever seen Levine interviewed, he has a good personality and can be self-depricating. Would he have convinced anyone that they should look forward to the halftime show? No. Could he have maybe gotten some people to back off? Yes.
Instead, the NFL just magnified the controversy surrounding Maroon’s 5 performance by hiding the band from the press.
The reality of the situation is simple. Maroon 5 will perform at halftime Sunday, more than 100 million people will watch them and no matter what happens, everybody on social media will bash the hell out of them and then everyone will go on with their lives.
The NFL canceling the group's press conference won't change any of that.
2. Speaking of organizations overreacting and making dumb decisions, Pittsburgh TV station KDKA has fired the person who described Tom Brady as a "Known Cheater" on a graphic. Can we please lighten up? Was it unprofessional? Yes. Should he have done it? Probably not. Does the person need to be fired? Definitely not.
3. This was an excellent tweet by free-agent pitcher Peter Moylan in resonse to the Red Sox signing Jenrry Mejia, who was once suspended for life after getting busted for PED's three times, yesterday.
4. According to this excellent Wall Street Journal story, Tony Romo made 72 predictions on the air this season (the paper says it watched every play Romo called—2,599 of them) and was correct on 68% of his predictions.
5. Here's a good history lesson on Super Bowl prop bets.
6. Great job here by Giants pitcher Derek Holland, who, whenever he attends a WWE event, buys replica championshp belts for kids in the audience.
7. This week's SI Media Podcast features two interviews. First up, is actor Steve Carell, who talks about The Office and his Super Bowl commercial for Pepsi. About 20 minutes into the show, Brent Musburger joins the podcast to talk sports betting, CBS's decision to ignore betting coverage during the Super Bowl, the scene in Vegas this week, prop bets and much more. You can listen to the podcast below or download it on iTunes.
8. RANDOM YOUTUBE VIDEO OF THE DAY: This would absolutely, 100% NOT get on the air on any TV station in 2019, but back in 1991, FOX's In Living Color aired a live show against the Super Bowl halftime show on CBS. That show featured this "Men of Football" skit, which led to much controversy.
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IN CLOSING: I think Tony Romo has gotten more coverage this week than Tom Brady.